By Ron Matz

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A Baltimore woman who has devoted her life to helping senior citizens and their families is retiring.

Janet Kurland has been a fixture at Jewish Community Services for 42 years.

“Forty-two years. I can’t believe it,” said Kurland, a senior care specialist at Jewish Community Services. “But I can only live it one day at a time and every day has been a challenge and a reward. We’re in the business of trying to help people. Boy is that special. It’s something I’ve appreciated since day one.”

Kurland is 88-years-old. Her many friends call her an inspiration.

“I don’t think she understands the impact she has, and will continue to have for many, many years to come to come, on people that she touches,” said Joan Grayson Cohen, executive director of Jewish Community Services. “She has been an icon in her community and she has helped so many individuals throughout her life.”

A large crowd tuned out for her retirement celebration earlier this week which was held at the Jewish Community Center on Park Heights Avenue.

“She has been such an amazing role model for so many of us,” said Leslie Pomerantz, chief development officer for The Associated. “Her drive, her commitment, her expertise, she has become our go-to person for taking care of our most vulnerable in this community.

She received a standing ovation at her retirement celebration.

“She is just a wonder,” said Ira Levinson, president of Sol Levinson & Bros. “I love her and wish her all the happiness in her retirement.”

Besides her work at Jewish Community Services, Kurland is also an author and an educator.

“Every family that comes to see me is a caring family,” said Kurland. “I don’t know the relationships. What I know is they wouldn’t be sitting with me if they didn’t care. Together we try to get through this maze of elder care to help a person be safe and comfortable.”

Kurland’s day at JCS was Thursday.

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